DDQ vs . security questionnaire

Through content to timing, confusion usually surrounds the differences between research questionnaires and security questionnaires. Read on to learn the nuances of each document to improve your own responses and win that will next deal.

What is a DDQ?

A DDQ stands for due diligence questionnaire . Organizations send them to mitigate risk before entering into a with another company. It is a formal document designed to establish whether a vendor complies with industry and/or consumer standards or needs, including how the vendor manages its own network and cybersecurity methods.

Unlike an RFP, the DDQ is not as much regarding competitive evaluations. A DDQ is all about compliance and company practices.

What is a security set of questions?

Much like it sounds, a security set of questions is sent to potential vendors to determine whether their security protocol meets the issuer’ s standards and lawful requirements. Security questionnaires are usually technical and usually extremely complex, however most questions are “yes” or “no” rather than narrative.

Note that none DDQs nor security forms are sales documents.

DDQs vs . Security Questionnaires

Now that you know the definition of a DDQ, let’s get into how security questionnaires are unique , along with a couple of similarities they share with DDQs.

Common industry

Any company can issue a DDQ, but we see all of them most in the financial services market. Security questionnaires are mainly used by organizations operating in technology—either hardware or software program.

Market evaluation

Much like a DDQ, a security questionnaire will not be used as a method of evaluation between vendors. Although, in case an organization throws an RFP (request for proposal) into the mix, then both questionnaires play a role in market comparison.

Because a security questionnaire is just not a competitive evaluation, the particular issuer won’t spend time executing a security review with more than five potential vendors. It’s completely different from responding to an RFP, which may be sent out to tons of vendors to cast a wide net.

Issuing departments

Generally, a security questionnaire comes from securities department (infosec, IT security, cloud security, etc . ). While a DDQ will never necessarily come from that department—marketing, client services, or compliance teams frequently send these documents to responders.

Sales timing

Security questionnaires and DDQs generally show up early in the product sales cycle. They may come in when an business is trying to set you as the vendor of choice or before it’s time to renew. Before you can become their new merchant, they need to make sure you’re up to date. If you’re an existing vendor, they may need to ensure you’re still compliant.

Even when you become their merchant partner, you might see a due diligence questionnaire again and again. Especially in the finance industry, DDQs are delivered to vendors annually—even quarterly—so make sure you’re up to speed on business regulations.

Document types

A security questionnaire is predominantly a good Excel spreadsheet. A DDQ might be a spreadsheet , but about 70% of the time, this questionnaire lives in the Word document.

Question types

Security questionnaires are usually a standard set of questions , where you answer some variation of a yes/no answer in a drop down. You might need to add some commentary in order to back up your answer. Whilst there will be some black or white questions in a DDQ, there is also room for decryption and creating a narrative.

Succeeding with Security Questionnaires and DDQs

To knock articles out of the park with security questionnaires and DDQs, normally, the best technique is accuracy . With this top of mind, here are other tips to help you be successful as a responder.

Security Questionnaires

You have a lot less area to knock this content out of the park. Your data is encrypted or it’s not. You possibly have the firewall or you don’t. It’s not about how you implement the firewall, it’s merely: Do you have the firewall setup?

Stick to the facts

Obviously, something you don’t want to do is lie. Let’s say you happen to be asked if you check your tragedy recovery plans every 60 days. If your process is examining disaster recovery plans every year, don’t say “yes. ” They will find out 60 days later when you don’t meet their requirements.

Time to completion

Time for you to completion is a really good point to shoot for with safety questionnaire responses. You’re usually still in an evaluation process where you might be the vendor of preference or you’re one of two choices.


Similar to an RFP response, there is more room for creativity with your DDQ content. However , don’t respond to a DDQ exactly as you should to an RFP. Before you respond, consult with the correct SMEs (subject matter experts).

Early phase advice

If you receive a DDQ in the early stages of the product sales cycle, this document may be their vendor filtering method. DDQs are not the time for a sales pitch. Instead, consider displaying your strengths with persuasive and (most importantly) precise narratives showing compliance. Past due stage advice

During the late stage of the cycle, your own DDQ might be a repeating document you respond to having an existing client, or it could be in addition to a DDQ you’ve already answered. Get straight to the idea and ensure accuracy to show you are still in compliance.

Following steps

If a DDQ is part of a sales procedure, and even if it’s not, response software such as RFPIO can make answering it a whole lot simpler. Your RFPIO Content Archives can answer many of a good DDQ’s questions with a few clicks.

For those Q& A pairs that aren’t in the Articles and other content Library, the software can nonstop you to the right SMEs to make sure you know that each answer might be accurate and the document is going to be completed on time.

RFPIO can help you increase DDQ and surveillance questionnaire accuracy and efficacy. Demo RFPIO today to aid your sales process.

The submit DDQ versus security questionnaire appeared first on RFPIO .

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